Makaravilakku Festival UPSC | Why In The News ?
Makaravilakku festival in Sabarimala Was Celebrated In Sabarimala Recently .
Makaravilakku Festival in Sabarimala:
- It is celebrated at the sacred grove of Lord Ayyappa at Sabarimala.
- It is an annual seven-day festival, beginning on the day of Makar Sankranti when the sun is at the summer solstice.
- The highlight of the festival is the appearance of Makarajyothi– a celestial star which appears on the day of Makar Sankranti on top of Kantamala Hills.
- Makara Vilakku ends with the ritual called ‘Guruthi’, an offering made to appease the gods and goddesses of the wilderness.
Indian Harvest Festivals :
- The festival of Makar Sankranti will be celebrated in Karnataka when the Sun enters the Makar zodiac and the days begin to lengthen compared to nights.
- The day marks the onset of summer and the six months auspicious period for Hindus known as Uttarayan, the northward movement of the sun.
- As a part of the official celebration of ‘Uttarayan’, the Gujarat government has been hosting the International Kite Festival since 1989.
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Different Names Of Makar Sankranti In India :
- Lohri by north Indian Hindus and Sikhs
- Sukarat in central India
- Bhogali Bihu by Assamese Hindus
- Pongal by Tamil and other South Indian Hindus.
- In South India and particularly in Tamil Nadu
- It’s the festival of Pongal which is being celebrated over 4 days at harvest time.
- In Assam and many parts of the North East, the festival of Magha Bihu is celebrated.
- It sees the first harvest of the season being offered to the gods along with prayers for peace and prosperity.
- Gujarat celebrates it in the form of the convivial kite festival of Uttarayan.
- In Punjab, Makar Sankranti is celebrated as Maghi. Bathing in a river in the early hours of Maghi is important.
- In Shimla District of Himachal Pradesh, Makar Sankranti is known as Magha Saaji.
- Saaji is the Pahari word for Sankranti, the start of the new month.
- Hence this day marks the start of the month of Magha.
- The festival is known as Kicheri in Uttar Pradesh and involves ritual bathing.
Shakrain ( In Bangladesh ) :
- is an annual celebration of winter in Bangladesh, observed with the flying of kites.
Maghe Sankranti ( Nepal ) :
- Its is a Nepalese festival observed on the first of Magh in the Vikram Samvat Hindu Solar Nepali calendar (about 14 January).